GREAT FALLS — An Emmy award-winning video made by Browning High School students is achieving more success. It’s one of three from Browning High School students being featured in a new TV series. The nearly 10-minute long video entitled "Browning Rising Voices” begins, as the title might seem to suggest, with voices rising to the beat of a drum.
"Seeing that it's grown to what it is now is awesome,” said Hailie Henderson, one of three students who directed the video.
But the video is actually about different rising voices, the poetry of students in Browning High School’s Rising Voices Poetry Club.
“Often times, we forget that everyone's going through their own lives and it's just amazing to step back and hear the stories that others have,” said Henderson.
The video is a feature on the poetry club and was made as part of a week-long film-making workshop with a nonprofit called MAPS Media Institute:
MAPS Media Institute is a 501c3 educational nonprofit with a mission to empower, inspire and prepare Montana's next generation for future success through professional media arts instruction, engaging community service and compassionate mentoring. MAPS is a flagship media arts organization in Montana and serves as a model for creative youth development across the nation.
"Being Native American, our stories are all told through oratories. So that's something that's very important to all of us Native students, being able to tell our stories,” Henderson said.
On Thursday, MAPS Media Institute will begin a new series on Montana PBS featuring videos from high school students across the state.
The first episode is called Blackfeet Country and will feature “Browning Rising Voices” as well as “The Last Day” and “Imagination," both by Browning students and both winners of regional awards.
"Native people are very empowering in what they have to say,” said Browning High School senior Tommi-Rae Trombley.
Trombley has a cameo in “Browning Rising Voices.” Even though she didn’t play a major role in the video, seeing its success is inspiring. “It’s taught me that you can do anything,” Trombley said.
The series premieres on Montana PBS at 7 p.m. Thursday, January 7th.